MINER - Residents of Miner will be the only Scott County voters with business at the polls Aug. 2.
"On Aug. 2, the city of Miner will ask voters to pass a franchise tax for telecommunication services," according to a prepared statement from Miner's mayor, Mitch Thompson, and the Board of Aldermen. "Every surrounding city we have contacted has this tax but we have never asked the citizens of Miner to implement it. Citizens would see a very small increase in their phone bill. We hope passage of this tax will enable the city to maintain all present services with little or no increase in property taxes."
The statement claims Miner presently has some of the lowest rates in the state and that city officials are committed to continuing to move forward and offering all the services its residents have become accustomed to.
"This franchise tax will help offset the continued increase in cost to provide these services," board members wrote.
Police Chief Roger Moore also released a statement in support of the tax.
"The board has been working very hard to bring the city up to the best place we've been in several years," Moore said. "I have been allowed more police officers for the citizens' protection and been able to supply them with appropriate safety equipment. We need this tax. It will only be a few dollars per household and combined it will be a great help to the city. With this money we can continue to provide good police protection."
According to the language on the ballot, if the measure is approved by voters the city will be able to impose a franchise tax not to exceed 5 percent of gross sales on all telephone and telecommunication services within the city.
City officials declined to estimate how much annual revenue the tax would bring in. "We don't really have any way of knowing how many phones and cell phones are out there," said City Clerk Janet Tuttle.